Buyers FAQs | Chantel Ray Real Estate

To buy or sell a home,  call  757-717-1003.

Buyers FAQs


Does the seller have to disclose defects to the property?

What is title insurance?

Should I have a survey done?

When will I get my deed showing proof of ownership?

When I go to settlement, what will I need to bring?

When should I get insurance?

My spouse is military. Can I still go to closing if he/she is on deployment?

How much time should I allow for my signing appointment?

How much time should I allow for my signing appointment?

When do I get the keys to the property? I am buying a condo.How do I get the key to my mailbox?

Who sets the date for settlement?

How Important Is The Contract To Sell Or Purchase Real Estate?

Top 5 things that can go wrong with closing?

Good to know: Email Correspondence Could Be Binding!

I’m ready to buy my first investment property…what should I be looking for?

We decided to buy a new construction home, what should we spend our upgrades on?

I’m trying to decide on buying an older home in an established neighborhood or new construction…what do you suggest?

I drove by a house I LOVE and I want to see it now – why do I have to be pre-approved to look at it?

Should I get a home inspection?

I found a house…now what???

I drove by a house I LOVE and I want to see it now – Why do I have to be pre-approved to look at it?

I’m trying to decide on buying an older home in an established neighborhood or new construction. What do you suggest?

We’ve decided to buy a new construction home, what should we spend our upgrades on?

I’m ready to buy my first investment property. What should I be looking for?

What are the best schools in Hampton Roads?

What Neighborhood has the lowest crime?

How do you know if the price per square foot is reasonable or if the home is really off in its price per square footage?

What are current interest rates?

How can I buy a home with you for free?

What are the problems with New Construction?

What are the downsides to buying a rehabbed home?

Top 5 problems with new construction

The buyer wants to walk away from the closing….WHAT???

The buyer has asked for repairs….what do I do now??

We’re ready to sell!!! How long will it take to get it sold?

Is there anything else we should do to get our home ready to sell?

I want to sell my house…do you know how much it is worth?

I am ready to put my home on the market…what do you think I should fix?

What do you do for marketing?

What are the top three things that separate you from other agents?

Am I able to review the documents that I need to sign before we actually meet?

What kind of guarantee do you offer?

How much do I have to pay the agents who sell and list my home?

How long have you been in the business?

What makes you different than any other real estate company?


Does the seller have to disclose defects to the property?

Under Virginia law Sellers are under no obligation to disclose defects to potential buyers, which is why it is critical that every buyer have a professional home inspection, pest inspection, and title search done during the due diligence/feasibility period of the contract. Buyers must ensure the contract allows a way out of the purchase of the home should there be any significant defects.

What is title insurance?

Title insurance protects against the risk of the buyer’s ownership being subject to the claims of another.A few examples of such claims are: outstanding liens against the property; delinquent property taxes from prior to closing; forged deed or release instruments; incorrect property description in the deed.

Should I have a survey done?

Attorneys will usually recommend having a survey as it is useful to know exactly where the property lines are. A survey will also reveal if there are any encroachments over the boundary lines. A survey of a standard residential lot currently costs $250.00 – $350.00, though large properties or acreage cost significantly more.

When will I get my deed showing proof of ownership?

Typically the deed is recorded by the settlement attorney the business day following closing. The clerk of court records it in the land records of the city and then returns it to the settlement attorney. This usually takes from three to six weeks. The settlement attorney mails it to the buyer, along with the title insurance policy. Beware! There are companies that solicit homeowners with an offer to sell them an “official copy” of the recorded deed shortly after closing, at a charge of around $85.00.

When I go to settlement, what will I need to bring?

stress-ladyUnder the Patriot Act, it is required that you bring a government issued photo ID – usually a driver’s license. You will also need to bring the funds the settlement attorney’s office has told you that you need to bring. The funds must be wired to the settlement attorney’s office in advance of closing, or you may bring a cashier’s check from a local bank. If anyone is signing by a power of attorney, the original will also be required.

When should I get insurance?

advise-ladyAs soon as a contract is signed by all parties, the buyer should begin shopping for homeowner’s insurance, which will cover general hazards, such as fire, theft, and vandalism. The first year’s insurance premium will be collected at closing, so you typically do not have to pay the insurance premium prior to closing.

My spouse is military. Can I still go to closing if he/she is on deployment?

Yes. Buyers can have the loan documents signed for them by giving someone a specific power of attorney. The buyer’s lender should be consulted to determine if they require a specific form and to approve the power of attorney before it is signed. Sellers can likewise close by power of attorney.

How much time should I allow for my signing appointment?

salestipsLoan closings for a buyer usually take an hour to complete. That is the time required to sign all of the lender’s documentation and have closing attorney explain the import of each one, including, in particular, the settlement statement.

When do I get the keys to the property? I am buying a condo.How do I get the key to my mailbox?

The seller should deliver all keys and garage door openers to the settlement agent at the time a signed deed to the property is delivered. The buyer gets the keys at the end of the closing, after all documents are signed and all monies have been paid.Usually condos do not have individual door delivery by the Post Office, but have a cluster of mailboxes set up for the neighborhood.

How soon do I know how much money I will need to pay at closing and can I use a personal check for my closing costs?

If you are getting a loan, federal guidelines require your lender to give you an estimate within three days of your loan application. The exact final figure can usually be given the day before settlement by your closing attorney, though in some instances it might not be available until the actual day of settlement.

Who sets the date for settlement?

Usually the settlement date and time is set by mutual agreement once the loan documents are made available by the lender to the closing attorney. The date cannot be before the buyer has made a final walk through of the property. Usually the buyer’s real estate agent initiates the scheduling discussion to see that all parties agree.

How Important Is The Contract To Sell Or Purchase Real Estate?

No document is more important than the contract. It governs the whole transaction. Anything not stated in the contract is, for practical purposes, not part of the deal. Under law you are entitled to the benefit of your bargain (as written in the contract). If you want something more, you have to get the other party to agree.

Top 5 things that can go wrong with closing?

Here we will count down the top 5 things than can go wrong with closing.
5. Walkthrough – you go to do your walkthrough before closing to make sure that everything is as it was when you signed the purchase agreement and any items that you asked to be repaired have been repaired. You get there and find out the stove doesn’t work, the seller took the refrigerator that they agreed to sell and none of the repairs we done.

Good to know: Email Correspondence Could Be Binding!

emailiconIn today’s modern and busy world it is safe to say that most of the correspondence between Client and Realtor is through email. For example, your client has placed an offer on a house, negotiated the financing options and emailed you as the agent for a status update.

I’m ready to buy my first investment property…what should I be looking for?

First you have to remember that real estate is similar to the stock market (although I believe a much safer investment than stocks) – you cannot predict what the market will do. But you can try to buy the best house in the neighborhood – so that when it is time to sell, no matter what the market is, your home is most desirable!

We decided to buy a new construction home, what should we spend our upgrades on?

We’ve decided to buy a new construction home. Now we need to decide what upgrades will be the best value for us? Upgrades tend to be money makers for builders. They are not made to give the home any extra value, but to make you love the home more than you already do! When deciding on upgrades, you need to decide what your long term goal for the home is.

I’m trying to decide on buying an older home in an established neighborhood or new construction…what do you suggest?

This question really depends on what values the neighborhood holds. Does the older home have everything you are looking for? Are you overpaying for new construction? These are all questions that you need to ask yourself.When looking at an older home, you are able to do more research on the neighborhood and see how the homes have held their value. If you plan to resell the house one day, this will be important to you.

I drove by a house I LOVE and I want to see it now – why do I have to be pre-approved to look at it?

Did you find a house you just had to see right this minute, called our office only to be told that you need to be pre-approved to see the house? Why? Most sellers only allow us to bring qualified buyers in their homes. We advise our sellers to only allow preapproved buyers to see their home. It takes a lot of work on the seller’s part for a home to be shown.

Should I get a home inspection?

Many buyers ask, why should I get a home inspection? The home was recently painted, has all new appliances, all new carpet and flooring…it even has fresh flowers on the foyer table. It looks like a beautiful place to live…what could be wrong? This is the age old question that our buyer’s agents get asked every day.

I found a house…now what???

You’ve found the house of your dreams and your contract has been accepted! Once the excitement starts to wear off, questions start running through your mind. What happens next? Are we missing anything? Chantel Ray Real Estate will help walk you through the steps from contract to closing!

I drove by a house I LOVE and I want to see it now – Why do I have to be pre-approved to look at it?

Did you find a house you just had to see right this minute, called our office only to be told that you need to be preapproved to see the house? Why? Most sellers only allow us to bring qualified buyers in their homes. We advise our sellers to only allow preapproved buyers to see their home.

I’m trying to decide on buying an older home in an established neighborhood or new construction. What do you suggest?

This question really depends on what values the neighborhood holds. Does the older home have everything you are looking for? Are you overpaying for new construction? These are all questions that you need to ask yourself.When looking at an older home, you are able to do more research on the neighborhood and see how the homes have held their value. If you plan to resell the house one day, this will be important to you.


We’ve decided to buy a new construction home, what should we spend our upgrades on?

We’ve decided to buy a new construction home. Now we need to decide what upgrades will be the best value for us? Upgrades tend to be money makers for builders. They are not made to give the home any extra value, but to make you love the home more than you already do! When deciding on upgrades, you need to decide what your long term goal for the home is.

I’m ready to buy my first investment property. What should I be looking for?

First you have to remember that real estate is similar to the stock market (although I believe a much safer investment than stocks) – you cannot predict what the market will do. But you can try to buy the best house in the neighborhood – so that when it is time to sell, no matter what the market is, your home is most desirable!

What are the best schools in Hampton Roads?

One of the top motivators for people when buying a home is schools! Being in a good school district is important for many buyers as well as looking at the resale value for your home. You should do your research on finding which schools are best in your city and the areas that you are looking to buy.

What Neighborhood has the lowest crime?

A question we are often asked is which city or neighborhood has the lowest crime rates? These are stats that vary based on many conditions. These stats should be checked to see if the city you are looking in meets your criteria.

How do you know if the price per square foot is reasonable or if the home is really off in its price per square footage?

Some people look at the value of a house based on the price per square footage. This is not always the most accurate way to look at the price of a home. Say you have 2 homes that are next door to each other and they are the exact same square footage. One has 3 bedrooms and one has 4.

What are current interest rates?

Interest rates change with the way the market fluctuates. This is still a great time to buy! To check out current rates, click here.
You can also contact, Nathan Techanchuk with Movement Mortgage at 757-747-0577 or nathan@movementmortgage.com to see what rate you can get today!!

How can I buy a home with you for free?

When buying a home, you do not have to pay for your real estate agent. The seller pays commission both to the listing agent for selling their home and to the buyer’s agent for bringing a buyer to buy their home. The buyer is not responsible for their agent’s commission.

What are the problems with New Construction?

stress-ladyNew Construction can be a huge blessing. You get to create the home of your dreams. You can pick out what floors you want, move rooms around to become more functional for your family and select countertops to match your taste – just to name a few of the advantages and perks. But new construction can also be a huge headache. We will touch on a few of the problems that you can try and recognize ahead of time and try to avoid

What are the downsides to buying a rehabbed home?

You’ve been looking for homes and all need repairs, when all of the sudden, you find one that has been rehabbed! You are so excited – it looks move in ready! Hold on just one second – there may be a few things to consider. Often rehabbed homes are being sold by investors who bought the house at a low price, fix it up, and then sell it at a higher price. There are a few downsides to this to consider

Top 5 problems with new construction

Here we will count down the top 5 problems with new construction.
5.Leaky Windows – If windows are not hung properly, it can lead to leaks, fogging and drafts. Installing windows is a multistep process and should be done correctly without cutting corners. They have to have proper flashing and insulation installed to make them function correctly and be energy efficient.

The buyer wants to walk away from the closing….WHAT???

The most dreaded words a seller can hear: “The buyers want to walk away from the contract.” What now? Can they do that? What will they lose? Sometimes buyers get cold feet. They begin to get nervous about how much their mortgage payment is going to be and should they be buying right now? What if the market starts to decline – will they lose their money? Sometimes they were rejected in their financing or they found another home they liked better.

The buyer has asked for repairs….what do I do now??

The house I am selling just went under contract! The buyer did their home inspection and now they have sent me a long list of repairs! What do I do now? This is a common scenario that we find ourselves in with our sellers. Once a contract has been accepted, if a home inspection was requested, it must be done within a certain amount of time.

We’re ready to sell!!! How long will it take to get it sold?

You have painted, updated, de-cluttered and are ready to put your home on the market. Now you have the age old question – How long will it take to sell my house? Our marketing strategy, if you follow our suggestion, is to price the home at the value where it will generate buzz quickly and get buyers in the door. The more desirable your home seems, the more buyers you will come through your door and want to make an offer.

Is there anything else we should do to get our home ready to sell?

There are a few items that we would like you to address in order to get your home ready to place on the market. First, we would like you to clear the home of clutter. When you are living in your home, it may be ok to have stacks of paper laying around and family pictures all over the home. But when you are selling, you want potential buyers to picture themselves living in the home and their pictures on the wall. Remove personal pictures and remove clutter from countertops to clear them off.

I want to sell my house…do you know how much it is worth?

There are many factors that go into the value of your home. Of course the condition of your home will be one of the first things to look at. Keeping the home updated and maintained will help a home hold its value. Also, any upgrades that you have done can be factored in. While these may not add actual value to your home, it will help place your home against the comparable sales in the neighborhood.

I am ready to put my home on the market…what do you think I should fix?

Getting your home ready for the market is one of the most important things you can do. Your home only have a few weeks as a “fresh” home on the market so you want to impress buyer’s right out of the gate. While each home is unique and different, there are a few pointers we can recommend to get you started. First and foremost, remove the clutter. The best investment you can make is getting a storage unit.

What do you do for marketing?

We have one of the best marketing programs of any agent in Hampton Roads. We spend over $40,000 in marketing each month. This includes radio ads, TV ads, print marketing and web based marketing. We are constantly on the radio, TV, email blasts and websites driving traffic to our agents so they can help find a buyer for your home.

What are the top three things that separate you from other agents?

First and foremost, our mission statement is to Glorify God by putting our clients’ interests before our own. We make sure to put our clients before our own needs and desires. We make every decision in our company in this order: 1. What’s best for the client, 2: What is best for the company, 3. What is best for the individual team member? Our client is what is most important in every transaction.

Am I able to review the documents that I need to sign before we actually meet?

This is a big step and you have a lot of questions. You want to be prepared when you meet the agent for the first time so you can make sure you are getting all of the information. How can you be prepared for that initial meeting? Ask the agent to send you the paperwork ahead of time so you can review it.

What kind of guarantee do you offer?

We have a no hassle listing agreement. If you’re not happy, FIRE us! If at any time you are unhappy with our service, we ask that you let us know what has not met your expectations. We ask that you give us one more shot with a different agent on our team. If you are still not satisfied with our company, we will release you out of your contract with no hassle!

How much do I have to pay the agents who sell and list my home?

We charge anywhere from 2%, 4% or 6% depending on who finds the buyer on the home. If you find your own buyer and no agent was involved on the buying side, we will charge 2%. If someone in our office finds the buyer for your listing, we can discount the commission to 4% (if agreed to ahead of time). If another agent brings a buyer for your listing, we charge 6% with 3% going to the buyer’s agent.

How long have you been in the business?

I have been a real estate agent since 2004. Since then, I have built a team of professionals and trained them to sell homes just as I did. I am a big fan of the Ritz Carlton and I want every client treated as if they were at the Ritz Carlton.

What makes you different than any other real estate company?

We are completely different than any other real estate company!To find out why,watch out secrets video at www.chantelray.com/secrets.